The process of die casting aluminum is a crucial element in the production of various parts used mainly in the automotive industry like transmission casings, gear housings, engine blocks, and motorcycle brakes. The numerous advantages of die casting process like the need for lesser post-processing work will enable the mass production of well-finished parts. In the process, the tooling of the die cast parts remains the most significant aspect, since a perfectly crafted design is vital for preventing any defect in the tool that can also manifest on the product.
Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS) 3D printing is the preferred method for validating the design as well as the capability of the product. DMLS can achieve this enhancing or complementing of the die cast through some crucial applications, which are described in detail below.
Prototyping Die Cast Aluminum Parts
Dense aluminum parts such as the AISi10Mg can be completely printed using the DMLS technique. DMLS aluminum has less weight complemented with high durability along with good thermal properties and corrosion resistance. This makes DMLS AISi10Mg ideal for constructing thin walled complex geometries much rapidly and accurately and that makes them suitable for creating quick-turn prototype parts. The equivalent mechanical properties of DMLS AISi10Mg to die cast aluminum are especially useful for prototyping parts, which are eventually die cast.
Steel Tooling Inserts
DMLS using Stainless Steel 17-4 is an important manufacturing aid for the final die cast tool. In the tooling, insert market through DMLS has assisted in the rapid production of complex die cast parts. This production method is much economical than the insert made using conventional machining process. To assist in speeding up the die cast tooling production, DMLS is utilized for creating feature-rich sections of Stainless Steel tool designs.
Low Volume Solution for Aluminum Production
DMLS provides inexpensive low volume solution for the production of small and intricate aluminum parts. It aids in avoiding many of the cost prohibitive factors like inserts, tooling, tooling aids, and additional material costs involved. DMLS is an excellent way for the production designs having intricate features, increased efficiencies of the material, decreased manufacturing costs, and quicker turnaround.
DMLS is preferred for the faster production of parts since it never requires a tool for creating the aluminum parts. Using DMLS, production aluminum parts can be printed in about 7-10 days. Moreover, it allows for quicker and efficient marketing of the new aluminum parts during the manufacturing of the final tool.